Cover for Out Here -- Poems and drawings by Ursula K. Le Guin, Photography by Roger Dorband

Nominated for the Oregon Book Award in Poetry

Comments from advance readers of Out Here


“Rock has no tongue to speak,” but Ursula, with these poems, gives the Steens Mountain country luminous, clear voice, and Roger, with these images, a sacred, orchestral music. There is intimacy and beauty and spareness on every page of Out Here — just as on the land itself.

— Molly Gloss, novelist and poet
Author of The Jump-Off Creek and The Hearts of Horses

Out Here is for me a hymn in praise of Steens Mountain, a territory I’ve revered since childhood. Roger Dorband’s precise photographs present us with the geology and natural life in all their intricate particularity. Ursula K. Le Guin walks out one clear night, under “the endless abyss of light” from the stars, into “blazing silence” and “eternity made visible.” Their work combines to provide an invaluable sight of the holiness we inhabit.

— William Kittredge, fiction writer and environmentalist
Author of Owning It All and Hole in the Sky

Ursula Le Guin and Roger Dorband have created a book of startling beauty. Le Guin’s poems capture the melancholy beauty of Harney County, while Dorband’s photographs illuminate the surprising grace of the landscape. Together, they are a joy. Out Here helps us see the desert with new eyes.

— Nancy Langston, environmental historian
Author of Where Land and Water Meet and Toxic Bodies

Southeast Oregon high desert, uncharismatic empty working space is beauty. Dorband’s photographs magically both near and far. Le Guin’s sketches precise and ancient, dry. Each of her poems a unique event, they don’t walk but hop, skip, jump — new rhythms, new rhymes. Here’s a book to make us want less of more — may the owl repackage us and put us there.

— Gary Snyder, poet and philosopher of nature
Author of The Practice of the Wild and
No Nature: New and Selected Poems

Along Krumbo Reservoir Road -- Photo by Roger Dorband
Near Fivemile/Frenchglen Highway 205 -- Photo by Roger Dorband
Page 32 — Along Krumbo Reservoir Road
Page 33 — Near Fivemile/Frenchglen Highway 205

High Desert

Out here, there is another way to be.

There is a rising brightness in the rock,

a singing in the silence of the tree.

Something is always moving, running free,

as quick and still as quail move in a flock.

The hills out here know a hard way to be.

I have to listen for it patiently:

a drumming canter slowing to a walk,

a flutter in the silence of a tree.

The owl’s call from the rimrock changes key.

What door will open to the flicker’s knock?

Out here there is another way to be,

described by the high circles of a hawk

above what hides in silence in the tree.

The cottonwoods in their simplicity

talk softly on, as hidden waters talk,

an almost silent singing in the tree

that says, here is another way to be.

— Ursula K. Le Guin

Riddle Mountain from the Owls' House -- Sketch by Ursula K. Le Guin

Riddle Mountain from the Owls’ House

drawing by Ursula K. Le Guin


Out Here

Poems and Images
from Steens Mountain Country

Ursula K. Le Guin

poems & drawings

Roger Dorband



Hardbound, 112 pages, 10.5"x9"


Raven Studios
September 2010


Order Out Here at Raven Studios


Webthing brings you to navigation links
Website Copyright © 2018 Ursula K. Le Guin
Updated Tuesday, 09-Oct-2018 21:31:18 PDT